Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Slowly, we are killing ourselves.

Two Hundred and Seventy Seven Lives
Every single one was once someones baby

According to this article in the Times of Oman, road deaths in the first five months of the year account for the loss of 277 lives. Last year, the total for the whole year was 666 deaths.

On our roads, by our own hands.

People, what the hell is wrong with us? This should be on every billboard in town, on the lips of every elementary school teacher in class, and on the to-do list of issues to address for every CEO in the country. The ROP and the ministries of education and health should be ashamed. We, as citizens and residents should be outraged.

To give you a sense of the scale of outrage we should all be feeling, I'll refer you to this article in the Independent, published December 30th 2006 and headlined "Palestinian death toll triples this year".

The figure cited in the article is 660 Palestinians killed as a result of Israeli aggression in 2006. That's six fewer people than were killed on our roads during the same period of time.

Essa Al Zedjali, editor in chief for the Times of Oman would make a much better use of his time addressing the issues that are actually killing Omanis in his viewpoint column. If we were to compare the column inches dedicated to the Palestinians struggle, vs the column inches dedicated to road safety here in Oman, in any major publication my guess is a ratio of 25 to1, if that.

We, for our part should donate money to a non-violent charity in aid of the Palestinians, while keeping them in our prayers. Our outrage, resentment, and political cartoons should be focused closer to home on an issue that each and every one of us can impact.

Tomorrow, a list of things you can do to personally reduce the death toll on our roads.


Anonymous said...

Not really that surprising at all.

I'd be really curious how many were children, which seems totally sidestepped by the article. We've all seen the kids driving around in 'launch position' between the front seats, or even just climbing around the car.


Suburban said...

God, ther must be so many babies. I would also be interested to see the stats on what percentage of the injured or killed are children under 10 /14.

thanks for commenting so often JP. Makes my day.